ABOUT GEORGIA’S PRE-K PROGRAM
What is Georgia’s Pre-K Program?
Georgia’s Pre-K Program is a lottery funded educational program for Georgia’s four year olds to prepare children for Kindergarten.
Who is eligible for Georgia’s Pre-K Program?
Children four years of age on September 1 of the current school year who are Georgia residents are eligible to attend Georgia’s Pre-K Program during this school year. Georgia’s Pre-K Program is voluntary for families and for providers.
Because participation in Georgia’s Pre-K Program is voluntary for public schools and for private child development centers, there may not be enough spaces in every community for all four year olds who wish to participate. Every effort will be made to contract with eligible centers to create enough spaces for children who want to attend OR to match children with available spaces in other Georgia’s Pre-K Program providers in the area.
For additional information about eligibility and enrolling a child in Georgia’s Pre-K Program please visit the Enrolling in Pre-K page.
When are the programs offered?
Pre-K programs usually operate on the regular school system calendar for the length of a typical school day. Programs may be offered at local public schools or through private providers of preschool services.
Extended day services beyond the 6.5 hour instructional day (before- and after-school care) may be available. Parents should contact their prekindergarten program provider to learn if these services are offered.
What do I need to enroll a child in Georgia’s Pre-K Program?
Proof that a child is age eligible and a Georgia resident is required to register for Pre-K. Acceptable proof-of-age includes birth certificate, passport, hospital record of live birth, green card, pink card or Federal I-94 card. Acceptable proof-of-residency includes a lease, utility bill or letter from a shelter or employer.
Parents/guardians should contact their local public school system or private child care providers to learn where Pre-K programs are offered in their community and how they can enroll their child. You can also call Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning at 404-656-5957 or toll-free at 1-888-4GA-PREK or check the Search For Pre-K locations for listings by county or zip code.
For additional information about enrolling a child in Georgia’s Pre-K Program please visit the Enrolling in Pre-K page.
All children enrolled in Georgia’s Pre-K Program must have a Certificate of Vision, Hearing, Dental and Nutrition Screening (DHR Form 3300) on file within 90 calendar days of program entry. Form 3300 must be signed by a private practitioner or representative of a local Department of Health.
Immunizations (DHR Form 3231) must be up-to-date or affidavits must be on file within 30 calendar days of program entry. Only health departments and physicians licensed in Georgia can obtain blank immunization certificates (Form 3231). Take your child’s personal immunization record to a health department or Georgia physician and they can complete the form and give any required vaccines.
What Learning standards do we use?
Georgia has a long history as a leader in promoting early learning and development outcomes for children. Georgia introduced its latest set of high-quality, research-based early learning standards for children birth to age five called the Georgia Early Learning and Development Standards (GELDS). The GELDS promote quality learning experiences for children and address the question, “What should children from birth to age five know and be able to do?” They are a set of appropriate, attainable standards that are flexible enough to support children’s individual rates of development, approaches to learning, and cultural context. The GELDS are a continuum of skills, behaviors, and concepts that children develop throughout this time of life. They are divided into age groups and serve as a framework for learning. The GELDS are aligned with the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework, the Georgia Standards of Excellence (GSE) for K-12, and the Work Sampling System.
Please use the link to view the GELDS standards for 4 to 5 years old.